The UK and the EU are at a stand-off over vaccines as the EU demands the diversion of vaccines produced in the UK to make up for shortfalls in the European Union.

German MEP Peter Liese, a member of the European Parliament’s health committee, said that the UK had “better think twice”, telling Euronews:

The demand from the EU follows a war of words between the two sides, including threats of lawsuits.

On Wednesday, the EU said that Astra “had pulled out of the scheduled call, in what would be an unprecedented snub of 27 governments”.

The drug maker denied that account.

According to Bloomberg:

“EU countries are desperate to speed up vaccinations after a sluggish start that’s left the bloc lagging far behind the U.S. and the U.K. The EU has administered just 2.2 doses per 100 people, versus 7.5 doses in the U.S., 11 doses in the U.K. and almost 45 doses in Israel. Astra’s vaccine isn’t due to be authorized for use in the bloc until Friday at the earliest.”

The public fight has epitomised the bloc’s failure to put its mass vaccination campaign on the right track added the US news outlet here.

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dan

Don’t listen to those EU idiots! So glad Britain isn’t part of the EU anymore.

Meirion X

I agree! It is the EU that wants to jump the queue!

Jonathan

The old blame someone else for your incompetence game that politicians for all nations and strips love to play.

Challenger

If Astra can’t fulfill the EU order (signed 3 months after ours) why does that mean they should take it from the UK’s?

They can blame the company producing vaccines if they wish but how is threatening another customer justified?

Covering for their own incompetence no doubt!

ETH

Fail to sign a contract until 3 months after the UK and yet the UK is to blame.

maurice10

Sadly, the EU is a victim of its own leaden bureaucracy by acting too slowly in ordering the vaccines early. Typically, the UK is open to jibes and threats, when they should be getting on with fighting COVID-19. This current debacle is clear evidence that Brussels is incapable of acting in a quick and coordinated fashion when it really matters. This huge conglomerate of states is so bound up by procedure, that it’s strangulating any hope of quickly streamlining processes such as this issue. Who knows how the EU will tackle Climate Change, the next global crisis, in a timely… Read more »

BB85

The EU politicians should be held to account for why they held up signing the contract for 3 months. It was political as usual. The French did not want to order it and lobbied the EU to hold off on signing it for a French vaccine. The UK along with everyone else signed up to anyone reputable early that was developing a vaccine so they could deliver millions of doses as soon as it was approved. The UK has likely ordered double what it needs from multiple suppliers to guarentee supply. Once everyone has received the vaccine I’m sure the… Read more »

John Clark

Absolutely guys, typically snail slow EU bureaucracy, they fiddled (held meeting after meeting) while Rome burnt and somehow it’s someone else’s fault, the drug company and the UK, huge surprise there then! A great example of how our independent Country can act quickly, for the benefit of its citizens and how the poor people of the EU have been very badly let down, in the worst way possible. The usual pro EU suspects on here are being suspiciously quiet …. The digital tumbleweed rolls by while we wait for a robust defence of the EU’s arrogant position, looking forward to… Read more »

maurice10

When I worked for a large company the time spent in meetings was disproportionate to the time you actually spent on the product. My usual contribution was about 1% to the furtherance of the issues, but one had to attend, it was mandatory. Brussels (EU) is full of meeting attendees and possibly each and everyone contributing about the same as I did? Okay, issues are addressed but at a snail’s pace, and that becomes the daily modus Operandi resulting in everyone swimming in molasses.

Mr Bell

BB85 you are right. The EU was betting big on the French manufactured Sanofi vaccine. Unfortunately the French appear to be less than good at biomedical engineering and vaccine therapies. The Sanofi vaccine failed at clinical trial and had to be scrapped.
Now the company are going to try to gesr up to manufacture Pfizer vaccines which is going to take many months to come to fruition.
The EU did not care its net far enough and was betting solely on an EU only solution. Which thus far hasn’t worked very well for them.

Mark B

I am sure AZ will produce tens of billions of doses in due course and the EU will get what they want however they can’t reasonably faff about for ages and then expect their share to be ready and waiting.

It is in our interests to see the whole world vaccinated but the priority is to get rid of the nasty variants.

If we can help any country we should but not at our own expense and we should certainly not respond to bullying.

Mr Bell

AstraZeneca are on record to say they would try their best to fulfill orders but from a research perspective the AstraZeneca vaccine is pretty much UK intellectual property researched using a majority of uk taxpayers funding. They bet big on the failed Sanofi vaccine and lost. Astra are on record stating only low rate initial production has begun inside the EU with about 31 million doses because the EU delayed by months and months to license the vaccine. No company will go into full scale production for a drug costing about £12 an ampoule (for 5 doses) without a license… Read more »

Rogbob

Of course we dont know what the contracts actually say so jumping to conclusions seems potentially foolish as it may well be Astra-zenica arent behaving well – and large companies are hardly known for being reputable! Although the suspicion that the EU is desperately trying to cover it’s complete failure does rather seem overwhelming. It is certainly ironic that one of the principal reasons for Brexit (for me – cutting out layers of admin and decision making being brought more accountable to UK people) has been demonstrated quite so quickly. Hence the EU doubling down to try and ensure it… Read more »

Douglas Newell

AstraZeneca has been acting perfectly properly. Even Robert Peston, arch remainer, can see the EU is at it.

Covid vaccine: What is the dispute between the EU and AstraZeneca? | ITV News

Rogbob

Unless you have seen the contract, you literally have no idea if that is true.

It is touching that some have such faith in global multinationals though. Or such bias against the EU, and as the rest of my comnent makes clear, I’ve no appreciation for it.

Douglas Newell

Astra Zeneca are tied with a non-disclosure clause, while the EU seems to be free to shout and stamp their feet like big babies and make all sort of threats. I’ll go with the company’s story of problems in the EU supply chain due to their late signing of a deal over the rantings and threats from the EU. AstraZeneca’s side of the story is being confirmed as more information starts to be known.

Thank goodness we left the EU.

Mr Bell

It’s funny that the EU have covered the Astra vaccine contract in a non disclosure cause? Why? Because they dont want transparency for their populace.

peter french

OH please you taken the sting out of your Post by mentioning that posturiing
stuttering vain glorious Peston

Douglas Newell

I agree he is an eejit, and that was why I mentioned it. Because even he is saying the EU is in the wrong.

farouk

The problem here is the EU placed a lot of its eggs on the French Sanofi Pasteur’s vaccine which was meant to go into production last month at the starting rate of 100 million doses a month, but which then pushed back that date to Oct 2021. which is why the EU rejected 500 million doses of the Pfizer vaccine which were offered to it. I quote from last Dec and the Brussels Times: Vaccines: EU turned down offer of 500 million extra doses “”The European Union was offered an extra 500 million doses of the vaccine now making it’s… Read more »

Mark F

I hear the French have given up on it.

Supportive Bloke

Yes, that has a lot to do with it. Essentially the EU experts wanted to do what the UK were doing. This didn’t suit Macron’s highly nationalistic agenda so he put a lot of pressure to take French product options. The French options didn’t materialize and now a late sign with Astra. Contrast that to the UK government, that underwrote the cost of developing the Oxford Astra vaccine. The UK government also bought the manufacturing options at risk, if there was no vaccine or nobody wanted the production slots the UK would have to pay for them, before there was… Read more »

Last edited 1 month ago by Supportive Bloke
Mark F

I couldn’t agree more with what you have said. This is just the beginning and as I have said all along the EU have made no secret about a proxy war with the UK and that includes Scotland by the way and only goes to show how terrified the German French alliance are of of a seismic shift in the balance of power from Europe to the UK. YOU START A TRADE WAR and the consequences are the global economy will not want to do buisness with you. How many bullied European nations have had enough? Greece, Italy and maybe… Read more »

Supportive Bloke

The really odd thing is that they are having a go at AZ from before they licensed the AZ vaccine! That is what makes it kind of obvious that AZ are being used as a scapegoat. The EU’s real current problem is the production of all of the other vaccines that they have licensed is also ‘slow’ to ramp up. Similar theme emerging? Anyone familiar with industrial chemistry will know the formidable difficulties that there are with taking lab scale to batch and then to process scale. You can make a lot of educated guesses but unfortunately you have to… Read more »

Mr Bell

Supportive Bloke. Excellent post. Totally agree

Mr Bell

The Sanofi vaccine utterly failed in clinical trials that is why it has been withdrawn. Injecting it offers no better protection then a placebo.

Mr Bell

Wasnt aware they turned down the offer of 500 million pfizer jabs. That will have been on cost grounds. It costs £13 a shot and the EU vaccine programme wasnt going to pay the going rate. They wanted to prove they were driving down costs and giving value for money to their citizens. Which is just nuts. £13 a shot vs someone’s life. Pfizer are making minimal profit off their vaccine. It is a complex very expensive manufacturing process to build a messenger RNA vaccine wrapped in lipids is going to be expensive. The UK wisely signed a reasonable contract… Read more »

Jonathan

Yep I don’t believe Pfizer are making much from this vaccine. But then when you are talking about whole population health of the EU even a pound on the vaccine will equal a billion pounds of cost to EU healthcare systems, that’s a lot of knee replacements or childhood vaccs and Imms programmes. Its a sad fact that when you start talking about pounds and pence in a health system and how and when you spend them it always ends in someone living and someone dying! These are choices made every day in every year In every organisation that makes… Read more »

farouk

I have to laugh I read this story on an Irish paper last week: Brussels block Dublin from buying Oxford vaccine as EU population aren’t ‘guinea pigs’ Ireland has been barred from ordering doses of the Oxford coronavirus vaccine in an apparent EU bid to pay the UK back for Brexit. The vaccine has been given the go ahead in the UK in order to vaccinate as many people as possible with the NHS under increasing pressure. The jab has yet to be given the green light by the EU and there may be delays due to Brexit. The European… Read more »

John Clark

Morning Farouk, very interesting. It just shows you how far the EU has gone in centralising power and pulling it away from the member States.

They have been sleepwalking into this for years, perhaps some will finally wake up and smell the coffee……

David

So they are threatening a trade war unless they get deliveries of a vaccine that they are not currently allowing to be delivered? Kafka could not have made this one up!

Andy a

Astra z claimed today that the contract numbers are targets not promises. I would say if your not happy here is cash back many other countries are begging for it ( only not for profit vaccine)

Mark B

AZ will have known that if they came up with a decent vaccine they would have been inundated with orders. A failure to deliver to target might void the contract allowing the EU to go elsewhere which is fine. Boris’s strategy of keeping well out of it is sensible. Going to Scotland was inspired.

Gunbuster

Lots of dead cats being dumped on desks in Brussels this week.

Deflect, Deflect , Deflect seems to be the default EU position.

AZ should take a lesson from the EU and start playing dirty. A redacted copy of the contract should be found by a jouno on a park bench then the “best efforts ” clause will be there for all to see.

Mark B

All countries in the EU know what EU contracts are like and they will know the type of terms drug companies will sign up to. No one will be fooled. The odd thing here is the EU is raging against the company which will sooner or later come to the rescue of it’s citizens. It is just a case of ramping up the production.

Cymbeline

Has rather teutonic overtones for me, they should learn to modulate their language. What they going to do? Send their bombers over??

Herodotus

He certainly seems to be a grade one plonker. But then, we have been sending UKIP plonkers to Brussels for years, to insult and turn their backs (liberally) on the EU. I think we need to get over the idea that the UK is home-ground for idiots….other countries have a plentiful supply as well!

David

Very true. One need look no further than this German MEP or a certain former US president…….

Cymbeline

Its always possible of course in that he was instructed to cause a kerfuffle to show German/EU outrage at being shortchanged for public consumption/perception, for one it puts pressure on a UK/Swedish company and makes the UK look bad in European voters eyes. If thats the case I would not be surprised as I’m sure mischief making is on the agenda of some within the EU establisment.

Herodotus

Anything is possible….but it doesn’t make it so! I’ll leave the conspiracy theories to the lost tribes of America. Anyway, Merkel isn’t that cheap!

Andy a

What bombers? Thought Germans only had 4 fly able planes due to cuts? Can’t invade Europe with soldiers using brooms as guns! They will use economic might.
funny that no ones talking about Germany bypassing Eu and buying own vaccine

Mr Bell

With all due seriousness our Astra manufacturing sites should be guarded with immediate effect by our armed forces. There is a risk of spoiling action by a foreign power envious at our country actually having vaccine manufactured and supplied to the UK.

Jonny

I was thinking about this too; these vaccines need to have round the clock protection because if it’s not a foreign power, it will be some loony conspiracy theorist wanting to burn the stockpile of ‘5G-containing’ vaccines.

terence patrick hewett

What is astonishing is that they never seem to learn. That threatening and browbeating the UK gets Europe precisely nowhere; but they still try it on century upon century. They never learn.

TrevorH

Imagine if Scotland were in the EU? (and this is before it has to pay in to the EU as opposed to receiving it from England)

I guess if push came to shove we would make supplies available to Ireland. Indeed if we have over production from Wrexham than I’m sure we will make it available to poorer countries. We are not needlessly hoarding it.

John Clark

And still we wait for the usual pro EU contingent to fight their case, the silence is absolutely deafening!

Could it be that it’s ‘finally’ dawning on them that leaving was the right move afterall?

A little slow to catch up with the rest of us perhaps, but finally, welcome to common sense!

Hermes

I’m french and it’s totally BS.
It’s not the fault of the UK if the EU is in this situation.

But hey… That’s come from a German, really need to say more ?

John Clark

Well Hermes, it’s time to get on the Frexit bandwagon, you can even join our Commonwealth, we even have a Queen you can put on your new Francs, just don’t lop her head off on her state visits!😁😉

Hermes

Certainly not for the moment.
The UK out of the EU is a good thing, not the France.
One of the main problem of the EU was the UK, now we have a chance to do something good, if that fail, it’s another debate.

Even if I would prefer a small western EU.

Mr Bell

Interesting. You have a chance with the UK out to do something? Like what? Create a new federated superstate controlled by France and Germany? Kind of like an invasion of other countries sovereignty but without a bullet being fired. Many think the EU was created in it’s current format to drive forward German dominance over Europe after failing in 2 world wars. I think the EU will fall apart before a true federated superstate becomes a reality. The fulcrum of that failure could well be the covid crises. I see Marine Le Pen is neck and neck with Macron mow… Read more »

julian1

I’m probably one of your pro EU contingent and have made a balanced posting below which promotes some kind of compromise in which the UK is NOT weakened. Whilst its clear the EU have screwed up and need to take responsibility for that, its really not driving a coach and horses through the EU argument. Even if the UK can complete its vaccination plan, it won’t make that much difference if not just the EU but the rest of the world is not moving ahead quickly with theirs. We all want to travel, we all want to trade. It requires… Read more »

Mark B

Julian that is what is surprising about this. The UK hasn’t been underhanded. It has merely moved quickly and got on with what is needed. We have ordered what is required from many sources and are now injecting people with those that have successful and have been quick to get ahead of the game. AZ will increase production no doubt but it is neither AZ nor the UK’s fault that the EU has been indecisive and are behind.

Mr Bell

Wrong. The vaccination programme isnt solely about econokica. It’s about saving lives and reducing the terrible burden this disease has had on the British people. A much greater toll then theEU is currently experiencing proportionately.

Supportive Bloke

Well bear in mind it was wee Nicola and her bunch of goons who kicked this off by publishing the vaccine delivery schedule.

Mr Bell

Deliberate ploy to stir trouble me thinks

Mr Bell

We have to get upto 20-30 million vaccines administered to all those 50+ and high clinical risk before we would have spare vaccines from our orders to even think of donating abroad.
Simply speaking the UK has the highest death toll in Europe and thus we have paid for the right (monetarily and ethically/ morally in human lives) for the right to retain uk manufactured, funded, researched vaccine.

Airborne

Sad to say but this is part and parcel of the EU and why so many people were pretty fed up with them. We need good relations with Europe, no matter what, but they do seem to shit on their own doorstep and then blame UK. They ordered the vaccine late, didnt like to be seen incapable of sorting out “there own people” and made such a bloody fuss about how great they are doing. Now its gone pear shaped, and they are going back to default setting, blame UK. EU politics is a dirty mess, all pretending to be… Read more »

Daniele Mandelli

SPOT ON!!!! Sick to death of their behaviour.

Very little about it on the BBC. What a surprise.

julian1

I’m seeing a huge amount of press coverage: BBC, Sky, LBC, CNN as well as the print press

Herodotus

I’m sure that it will run & run. Hopefully, something sensible will be said about the crisis we are in at some stage. So strange how hatred becomes a unifying force and diverts us away from the real issue!

dave12

Sorry DM but its the headlining story on the BBC online news. People on left say the BBC is bias and people on the right say its bias ,so they must be doing something right in being impartial, especially compared to other nation news.

julian1

i’m glad you’ve said that since the BBC can never win. The right wing claim it is bias to the left and the left wing claim it is bias to the right. The reality is that the BBC are centrist. It’s a mark of politics in this country that people don’t see that. The Centre has been poorly represented in recent years because of deselections from both Tory and Labour parties though Sir Kier is attempting now to recover that ground. with labour.

dave12

As a Centrist myself I totally agree with you julian, in this online world that panders to the extreme left or extreme right the centrist are left out, and in my opinion so is some common sense left out too.

Daniele Mandelli

And I’m sorry too Dave12, but you don’t get my meaning. I was expecting this response as I left it hanging deliberately to see a response!One I said “very little” not “nothing” and two where does it quote the headline on this website? It is the spin on how the story is delivered. I too have read that report at 0500 this morning on my night shift. “UK will ‘face consequences and better think twice” where is that? As for folk defending the BBC, pull the other one. I invite you to read “The Noble Liar” https://www.amazon.co.uk/Noble-Liar-Distorts-Promote-Liberal/dp/1785903497 Now I’m getting… Read more »

Daniele Mandelli

And to add some balance, which even we supposed right wing sorts are actually capable of, though you’d never believe it given some here talking of “hate” which is utter cobblers and the usual spin, the latest BBC report has an analysis by Nick Triggle that I admit does at least seem fair. OK.
https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-55838272

dave12

Fair enough DM I would say some people come on here to learn (like myself )more on military knowledge through the comment section with researchers like yourself, and former service people but yes a lot of us are guilty of the political spats when it comes to military story, given though this story is very political.

Daniele Mandelli

No worries mate, not arguing with your good self at all. I’m also guilty of getting involved in “political spats”, and I actually try to avoid it and keep failing as I will wade in with the best of them if such is already underway.

I’d support an instant ban from the site for anyone who indulges in it if it meant we could actually keep the UKDJ for purely military related posts.

Herodotus

Well DM…..if this article wasn’t designed to encourage political debate, what was its objective? Given the political views of many on this site, this article was like the proverbial red rag to the bull! Fortunately the posts have been fairly ‘moderate’ (in UKDJ terms) so far. You have got the Brexit that you wanted…you can feel free to put away the ‘sword of justice’ less you start tilting at windmills! 😉

julian1

Politics and military goes hand in hand. What’s that song? don’t want you singing to yourself all day about church and marriage though 😉

Herodotus

😊

John Clark

Indeed Daniele, the BBC have glossed over it, certainly not a single word of Macrons push for the failed French vaccine and subsequent delay in ordering alternative vaccines ….

Daniele Mandelli

Of course John, it is the spin on the reporting that I did not adequately explain in my first post that so frustrates. The same ball park that Covid is all Boris / HMG fault when in fact it is people’s behaviour that is causing this spread, despite HMG;s mistakes early on with PPE and Test and Trace. Vaccination programme going well? Where is the praise? The positivity? The hope? The moral booster? Laura Kuenssberg was only interested in hanging the PM the other day on the 100,000 deaths total, and media just love a negative report to slam the… Read more »

barry white

I just watched the lunchtime version of Al-Jazeera and lo and behold did you know that the whole of S America is in a real bad way re the virus
I thought it was only the UK that had it
Well it does seem that way at times when i watch the so called world news

John Clark

Absolutely Daniele, spot on……

I’ve taken both parents and one in law to my local vaccination center and I was totally awed at the organisation, the care and professionalism of all involved, it makes you proud to be British, outstanding in every way….

Millions vaccinated already = fantastic news for us all!

But, the left just swipe and snear (actually seeming pissed off its going so well) and the BBC act as cheerleaders for them…..

Piss poor…

Jonny

But to be fair vaccinations are one of the few things we HAVE got right and most ‘leftists’ I know don’t disagree with this. It’s the rest of the Covid response that the government has lagged behind most other countries in. I can give you examples but I think you already know…

Crabfat

Just had the vaccine this afternoon, John and I concur totally with your views. A very slick operation, set up in the local shopping mall. Totally professional but, at the same time, kind and chatty – everyone just pleased they are helping. Whilst Boris and his govt have faced justifiable criticism over their handing of the crisis so far, they can truly claim much kudos for a massive success with the vaccination programme.

The Artist Formerly Known As Los Pollos Chicken

The bbc 😂 every time I hear that acronym I can’t stop laughing 😂. Soon man soon the end is nigh for these shitehoose fake charlatan masters of spin and propaganda .

The Good news is the new Andrew Neil 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿fronted news channel will be here soon.We might actually get to hear some balanced reporting 🇬🇧

John Clark

Andrew Neil you say Artist, top bloke….

This Week was one of the few BBC programms I religious watched, the mix of Neil, Portillo and thoughtful Labour guest was a superb mix, no wonder the BBC axed it!

It had to make way for Drag Race Canada or some other comparable lazy arse, Woke bull crap programming…..

The Artist Formerly Known As Los Pollos Chicken

Yes it was the only programme I watched every week on that shower of 💩 without fail fair and balanced. The Marxist loving looney left just don’t get it this is why record numbers are cancelling the licence fee and I believe the beeb are facing a 160 million black hole. 👋🏻💯 it’s over for them in their present form.

GB news and the R Murdoch news Chanel both coming to a screen near you soon .

👍🏻🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿🇬🇧

I’m sorry, you’re looking forward to a channel run by Rupert Murdoch? Oh dear…

The Artist Formerly Known As Los Pollos Chicken

Not so much Murdochs Chanel but the other GB news with Andrew Neil 👍🏻 Wey hey man 👍🏻😄

Rfn_Weston

Bitter fools. They expect to be 3 months late to the party yet to sit at the top of the table. If the EU wasn’t a mess of red tape & ego’s maybe they’d be able to get organised. The reason we have the Biotech vaccine is that we approved it for use and pre-ordered in advance. Not out of any favour from the EU the self righteous p*icks. Same reason we have the first 100 million AstraZeneca vaccines on contract – we got organised for a change! It is business plain & simple. AstraZeneca aren’t going to risk a… Read more »

DJ

I don’t see what all the fuss is about. Some countries like Australia forward ordered from multiple companies many months ago (including a local manufacturing deal for the Oxford vaccine), as well as putting up R&D money. All well before approvals or even stage 3 trials. In a pandemic, it really is the quick or the dead. The fact that the EU sat on its hands for months is their problem.

Rfn_Weston

Exactly, we booked production capacity with AZ before a viable vaccine was even found. Risk/Reward. That allowed the quick start as the production lines were up and running at the work go… UK plants have had their own capacity issues… 3 months ago.

The process is well run in now so gathering a head of steam. The EU have tossed about mostly thanks to France’s protectionism as usual and now want to be at the front of the queue.

Someone above said ‘playground bully tactics’. that exactly what it is.

Mr Bell

Rfn it’s all true what you say. But to add.
AstraZeneca vaccine was majority funded by UK taxpayers. We ordered in block contract.
The EU meanwhile delayed and pontificate in extremes betting on the failed Sanofi vaccine to come to their aide.
Then demand millions of doses of AZ vaccine to be released whilst only today licensing the drug for use within the EU.
Then due to costs they turned down the offer to mass manufacture 500 million doses of pfizer vaccine. Just scandalous behaviour and incompetence of the highest order.

julian1

I think the compromise may be: AZ prioritises UK until the 4 high category groups are vaccinated (or maybe the top 6.) This brings us to mid Feb/mid March timescale if current rates are maintained. Then divert some supplies to EU. Why? Well, simply because even though we’ve seen the worst of the EU in its competence, nationalism and slopey shoulders, the fact is we’re not going to be safe until we’re all vaccinated and a vaccinated EU allows us to more quickly open our economy and get life back to normal. Also, it reduces the threat of mutants developing… Read more »

Supportive Bloke

By that time there will be lots of plants making the Astra vaccine at scale.

I agree arguing now for short term gain is not productive.

Herodotus

Absolutely Julian…’vaccine nationalism’ will not help any country…we are in a race against covid 19 not each other! Astra-Zenica appear to have overestimated their ability to fulfil the contracts that it has signed. This is for AZ to sort out and they need to be working with all countries concerned to a achieve a short-term compromise….this may mean shipping some UK supplies to EU countries. The longer term answer is to expand production facilities …. we are in the early days of a global fight against this virus….international cooperation is paramount. I am rather saddened to see this issue appearing… Read more »

John Clark

It’s typically piss poor planning by the EU Politburo Herodotus and it’s everyone else’s fault! It drags EU central planning into the harsh cold light of a January day and shows how utterly incompetent it is, when it really matters most and lives are at stake. As for shipping UK supplies to the EU, I don’t have any issues there, so long as it’s after everyone over 50 in the UK has had two doses. That might sound harsh, but I will guarantee that Boris would be politically crucified from all sides if he diverted UK orders before that point.… Read more »

Herodotus

Praise indeed from you John! I am in group 5 and can expect to receive my first shot before the summer? I am quite prepared to wait longer if it means protecting the most vulnerable in Europe I think that many people would do the same. We need to be working together on this and the comments by Mr Liese are, at best, unhelpful. As for having my ‘blue flag’ shot full of holes, I await that event and don’t mind as long as there are 28 holes😊

Mr Bell

Agree the UK cannot donate any vaccine until all over 50s and all key workers are vaccinated. So sometime in late May I would think under current vaccination plans. Later if the EU stops the flow of the pfizer jab. If I was CEO of AZ I would return the EUs contract as unfilled and tell the EU to source vaccine elsewhere. The AZ vaccine is currently the only vaccine safe for a world wide roll out. Unless the Russian Sputnik is also reported to be similar???

Mr Bell

Astra approached the EU weeks and weeks ago. Offered full rate production but the EU declined because their medicines agency didnt trust the CDC, MHRA or any other country’s regulator to have made the right decision. The EMA then went about a hugely lengthy time consuming peer review of all documentation that took many months. Only to conclude that the British and Americans were right. AZ vaccine is safe and effective. Why did they pontificate? Why did they turn down offer of full rate production that has meant they are only getting 31 million doses instead of 100 million now… Read more »

John Clark

I see the middle ground you are aiming for Julian, but it just won’t fly. You make a well reasoned argument, but as I suggested to Herodotus below, such a move would be utterly politically unacceptable, no UK government of any colour would ever sanction it. Simply put, UK lives would be sacrificed to save EU lives, it’s an unsettling and harsh fact. The UK government ‘must’ stick to the plan and ensure everyone over 50 gets both doses before we can think of diverting our order. The NHS has done an incredibly good job on the vaccination programme so… Read more »

julian1

my post states that minimum number of UK categories need to be vaccinated first before any goodwill diversions to EU, but a 75 year old in the EU should take precedence over a fit 40 year old in the UK based on the tightly coupled supply chains/manufacturing and investment decisions already actioned. I think if we got this right, it could be an excellent PR activity so soon after the trade deal. Anybody who believes that UK should not export/share under any circumstances fails to recognise that the benefits of full vaccination won’t be realised in the UK if our… Read more »

SwindonSteve

F**K that pal!

The only time any UK produced vaccines should be diverted away from the UK program is when production exceeds that which is required to maintain the pace of vaccinating every man, woman and child in this country, before next winter.

They can have everything over and above that, but until then, no.

Mr Bell

Agree

John Clark

It might sound a tad churlish, but re the new relationship, I do believe they immediately started threatening and Sabre rattling, not conjusive to relationship building.

What would Biden say, hmm, good question, I suggest they ask and sharpish!

Or, like I said, there’s always Sputnik 5 to try..

Mr Bell

Funnily the Russians are more then happy to supply vaccine to whoever wants it. They are selling hundreds of millions of doses to India.
Sputnik is in essence a near carbon copy of Oxford vaccine.

Mr Bell

The uk government have to get down to tier 5 vaccination priority group before any vaccine can be freed up from our contracted supply.
If EU citizens due of covid that is not our fault. It is the EUs fault for utter incompetence.

Julian1

Looks like your position has mellowed since you’ve worked down the thread. Perhaps you do believe in global social responsibility after all!

Herodotus

Like litmus paper!

barry white

Hi John
You just wrote
Simply put, UK lives would be sacrificed to save EU lives”
Isnt that what the UK has done for the last 3/4 hundred years
And they still hate us


Mr Bell

Agree. We bleed and die. They hate us for it. The cycle has to stop. Time Europe dealt with it’s own utter mess.

Mr Bell

The number 1 priority of any government is to protect its citizens. Therefore giving any UK manufactured vaccine to the EU that is from our contracted supplies is a dereliction and failure of the primary duty of the government.
It is tantamount to stating EU citizens lives are more valuable then UK citizens. Let’s be Frank some uk citizens will die of covid for a lack of a vaccine they would have got but for any donation to the EU.

Julian1

that Policy leads to the chances of further mutations developing which resist the vaccines. In that case it would make no difference that UK had achieved 100% vaccination. This is a global issue which is only solved by the world working together, I developed this point elsewhere on the thread so won’t repeat it

Mr Bell

No Julian.
We continue vaccinating at full steam because British citizens are dying to the tune of 103,000 so far. That is not something the EU , or you, want to hear but that is the truth. No vaccines can be sent abroad when the UK has the highest death rate in Europe.
That is morally, ethically indefensible. Once France and Germany surpass our death rates then on humanitarian grounds there is an argument for mutual aide.
Until that time. I’m sorry the EU can do one. It’s their mess, they can lie in it.

Herodotus

Vaccination Nationalism……oh dear!

Mr Bell

Is it vaccination nationalism to simply state the truth. On the grounds of death rates and disease burden the uk vaccination programme is likely to save more lives then the distributed EU programme. Plus is it wrong to want our own populace to be protected from this terrible disease. Until you have worked as a clinician in the frontline of the NHS as I do every day. You cannot possibly know the horrific nature of this disease. So not nationalism just simple statistical facts. Once the EU has a death rate that is proportionately higher then ours then they can… Read more »

Herodotus

No, it is petty nationalism!

Mr Bell

No it is not. It is statistical fact. You can call it pretty nationalism all you like but until the EU has proportionately the same death and hospitalization rates as the UK there is no justification to mutual aide.
The EU has shown its card this morning by blocking exports of vaccines until their orders are fulfilled.
That’s the first example of petty nationalism or supra nationalism in the EU case.

Mark F

The EU has declared a war with the UK by proxy in that they are trying to force third a party ie multi nationals destroy the UK. The stupidity of all of this is the EU will destroy its self. There isn’t a right thinking multi national who would want to do business with a trading bloc who changes the rules whenever they feel like it. When will the EU realise the world does not revolve around them. To use its citizens lives to get what they want when they want it is almost a Stalinism trait.

AlbertStarburst

A couple of points:
1) The Continetals were never very good at queueing.
2) Sounds like the UK Gov is at last starting to wake up and smell the roses as far as developing National Strategic Resources and Capabilties like I have been banging on about on this forum..
e.g.
“Oxford vaccine was going to be developed by Merck, a German company, until HMG stepped in and said it must be done with a UK headquartered company, hence AstraZeneca deal.”

Matthew Thorne

Can someone remind me why we still call the EU our friends and partners. This is nothing short of a mafia style power and resource grab. I think any pretense that remainers have that the EU is a benign entity are blow literally out of the water now. The EU only have themselves to blame for their vaccine mess up. They should do the decent thing that Boris did and say they take responsibility for the mess they have created. I have great respect for what Boris has done. He had to deal with Brexit, covid-19 and now an overly… Read more »

geoff

It’s stuff like this that makes my Brexit doubts evaporate. there is no question that the EU is STILL out to punish us for daring to leave! Also, despite accusations of left wing bias against the BBC, having watched their reporting on this yesterday I am now fully convinced they are in the hands of a left wing/anti-Brexit clique. They punted the EU grievance line 100% without giving any coverage or right of rebuttal to the Astra Zeneca side. It was outrageous. i hasten to had that the left and anti-Brexiteers are entitled to their views but surely the BBC… Read more »

geoff

..despite accusations of left wing bias against the BBC I had given them the benefit of the doubt but…

George please can we have an Edit facility.

Frank62

There is an edit button, sort of “settings” type icon at the bottom right corner of any post I write that says “manage content”” when cursored over & when clicked says “Edit” & clicked again, allows the writer to edit; at least it does from my PC.

Last edited 1 month ago by Frank62
Daniele Mandelli

Ah! Thank you geoff. Channel 4 news at 7pm will make you tear your hair out!

geoff

Hi Daniele! We get the BBC World News channel from DSTV. What made me cross was the fact they had 3 or 4 people making the case for the EU but NOT ONE for Astra. Even if they had allowed an AZ spokesperson to say Good Afternoon it would have been an improvement! 🙂
Rain on and off here but mild. Cheers my friend.

julian1

Geoff, BBC world news plays to a totally different audience…not to Brits or even descendants. You may as well watch any international news channel

julian1

its very good

Herodotus

C4 news is probably the best available on terrestrial TV. Always liked Jon Snow….a good egg!

Nathan

geoff, when we were in the EU there was a disappointing trend that EU decisions were increasingly going against us. Up until about 2009 I think it was we were doing quite well and Germany was the outlier but after that we were increasingly at odds with the Brussels establishment. At the end of the day I think most of us who voted Brexit did so with a heavy heart because we are fans of Europe, have friends and family there and believe in mutual cooperation amongst friends. It was all about trajectory and all the sign posts were miserable… Read more »

Robert Blay

The right think the BBC is left wing bias, the left think it’s right wing bias. So maybe they are impartial after all. 😆

Mr Bell

It’s not about trying to punish us from leaving. It is simple scapegoating. They have really messed up big time on the vaccine issue. Most EU citizens are now seeing this. So the EU tries to blame anyone they can. Just so happens the UK is this easy pariah state they can blame for all their incompetence.
The Crux of the problem is delays in licensing, delays in ordering and putting all their hopes in the Sanofi vaccine which was an utter failure.

Frank62

The BBC are very biased. However it’s not LW or RW, it’s extreme liberal pseudo-libertarian. They’ve got a clear agenda to mould every generation to their narrow viewpoint, witnessed by excluding voices they don’t like & championing ad-nauseum those few they admire, beyond all sanity. Their Brexit coverage was the last straw for me, but also recent years of watching “points of view” or whatever it’s called today, where each compliant is outlined then every time dismissed basically because the BBC think they’re always right & can’t do any wrong based on the reputation it had 30-40 years ago. For… Read more »

Joe16

I also am frustrated by the EU’s very combative language, but I think there is something of a flip side here too. Apparently AZ listed the UK factories as the primary supply points for the vaccine batches going to the EU, rather than the Belgian one that is underperforming. It is therefore not unreasonable for the EU to be wondering why the UK factories’ production is not leaving the country, or at least not heading for the EU. The EU is also claiming (I don’t know if this is true), that the AZ factories in the UK were developed and… Read more »

Rfn_Weston

yes it is unreasonable to expect that as the first 100 million doses were booked by the UK prior to a vaccine even being available… We put the capital up front and took the risk.

If the EU want to approach it from a contracts perspective they have very little leg to stand on.

The EU funded improvements to the EU supply chain of the BioTech vaccine not AZ which the UK is benefiting from… BECAUSE WE ORDERED IT EARLY.

Joe16

I agree with you, if what you’re saying is the case. Although I’ve no doubt that we are also under a “best efforts” clause. But the FT report I read said specifically that the EU are claiming they put up capital early to AZ to prepare their facilities in the UK (which was apparently listed in their contract as the primary production location) for higher output. It may even have been before we signed on the dotted line for our vaccines, if it was money for infrastructure and capacity improvements (that we have been enjoying the benefits of while the… Read more »

Rfn_Weston

(I’ll start by saying I’m not writing this while worked up at all… Just I have an interest in such matters so here we go…) Even if that is true, capital investment for product improvements & supply chain efficiencies does not translate to ownership of production capacity. Not in contract law or any other basis (unless on a sole supply contract). It’s entirely down to AZ to determine the best way to fulfil its various contractual obligations & the EU can apply political pressure to have their will obeyed, but political pressure is the limit of their power as there… Read more »

Joe16

I’m not taking any offence- I really appreciate your input as a voice of experience. Everything that you say maks sense, but if that contract names UK production sites as primarily supplying that EU contract, and they aren’t, then surely that is an issue for the EU? That’s what they’re claiming, alongside their claim that they provided capital to get those plants running at expanded capacity. It’s the two together that I feel would be compelling, if true. That’s my big question, and as you say it’ll be interesting to see what the contract says- it seems that everyone wants… Read more »

Mr Bell

It is the case. Those are the facts.

Mr Bell

No it is not true. AZ vaccine was not funded by the EU. Majority funding was done at risk by the UK taxpayer and government. Yes the EU has funded vaccines like Sanofi (failed) pfizer (too expensive according to the EU for mass vaccination and thus 500 million doses rejected). AZ was not a mass receiver of EU funding. Compared to HMG which invested hundreds of millions in the Oxford vaccine and now which must be really annoying for the EU. They now need a British dedigned and manufactured vaccine. The Oxford vaccine to be clear will be the vaccine… Read more »

Joe16

Sorry, I think you misunderstand me; my understanding of the EU claim is that a) their contract names the UK facilities as supply points for their order of doses and b) they put up capital to expand those facilities for greater production- not funding the vaccien development as such.
If both a and b are true, then I can understand at least some frustration from the EU.
Of course, if the EU are overstating their position then that’s a different story. I am only cautioning that there are two sides to the story, not which one is true.

Airborne

This could be sorted out quite easily, get the various Countries military HQs and Command staff to sort it out. No bias, no bullshit, just Allies, friends and colleagues with no political spin to froth. However I have just seen the old SNP “great leader” jumping on the EU bandwagon, desperatly trying to score a few points if and when they get Indy and try to rejoin the EU! She is so shallow and obvious, she would fit right in sat in Brussels sewer.

Mr Bell

Blimey airborne I thought you were a Nicola Sturgeon fan? She is a two faced weasel. I loved seeing how hot under the collar she got when BoJo went to “her Scotland” I think this needs to happen very regularly. A uk minister goes there every week to check on progress of vaccination and public services during this time of national crises. Then step back and watch the SNP lose it.
My opinion granted but would be hugely childish fun for the rest of the UK.

Ron

Why, as far as I understand the Oxford development was paid for by the UK. If the EU needs help ask, don’t demand or threaten. As to this date 28/01/2021 the EU has not approved the AZ vaccine for use. So explain to me why a company should develop infrastructre for something they do not know if it will be approved or not. Even if it is approved and made in the UK and shipped to the EU what about border control, will that be lifted. If so then border control on other things can be lifted. As the EU… Read more »

SwindonSteve

Superb!

AlbertStarburst

Uncle Nigel is touting the following concept:
As we are likely to have at enough doses to vaccinate our population 5x times over, why not do a deal with the EU now that gives them some of our surplus vaccine in exchange for no more silly-buggers at the borders, and to do a deal on financial services (that was left out).

For once the UK has the upper hand with the EU, but should we use it?

Defno give AUS, NZ CAN some AZ.

Mr Bell

Because uk citizens are dying in their thousands. 104,000 to date. The UK is the worst affected country in Europe. That is a fact. We have a more virulent strain. “The Kent variant” that is 75% more contagious and 30% more fatal.
Those facts mean we should NOT IN ANYWAY EVEN BE CONSIDERING ANY DONATIONS OF UK CONTRACTED VACCINES TO THE EU.
Sorry the capitals came on by mistake but I’m fine with that.

John Hampson

The EU has not even approved the AZ vaccine. It placed an order with the EU 3 months AFTER the UK. It was reported that France pressured Brussels not to back the UK vaccine but to wait and buy the vaccine the French pharma company Sanofi and the Pasteur Institute were developing. ( The Pasteur Institute incidentally announced on Monday 25th Jan, that they were abandoning further research, while Sanofi announced their most promising prospect would not be ready before the end of this year, at best. Source France24 news channel ) The EU’s demand AZ meet its contractual commitments… Read more »

John Walker

This is not about the AZ vaccine. The EU plan is to take over the UK allocation of the Pfizer vaccine manufactured in Belgium. Hence the mud slinging on AZ effectiveness for 65+. The eurocrats will save themselves from public humiliation by being able to go back and say they have secured their original number of doses of vaccine and have an even better one at the same time. The really don’t care about the UK or AZ it’s just the leverage they are using to put in place a export ban of vaccines and supplies. The root cause of… Read more »

Caspian237

I think surplus UK stocks of the AZ vaccine should firstly be offered to the ROI since we have a land border with them and it is in GB’s own interests to do so. Additionally, the EU were very keen to do everything to maintain free movement between the North and South and so uphold the Good Friday agreement during the Brexit negotiations and it would seem logical that having the entire island at the same level of vaccination would be vital to this. I doubt the EU would be particularly popular in Ireland if the Commission stepped in to… Read more »

SwindonSteve

Nice! Playing the game…

Sjb1968

I assume any lorries leaving the U.K. with the vaccine can expect a protracted checking process on the other side of the channel to protect the integrity of the single market.
Indeed given the importance of having the correct paperwork if anything is wrong I look forward to the goods being returned to the U.K. or held at the dockside until all those boxes are ticked!
Of course if continental lorries arrive to collect the vaccine from the U.K. someone better tell them not to bring sandwiches.

Mr Bell

Very funny. Or at least it would be if it wasnt true.

Latch71

The quote is from an MEP – a complete nonentity then.

Julian

If this does escalate to the point of the EU (unjustifiably) retaliating against the U.K. by stoping Pfizer exporting its contracted U.K. doses from its Belgian factory it would be rather wonderful if it backfired on the EU and a year or two later Pfizer decides that the EU is an unreliable place to have a big manufacturing site and moves some or all of the production to the U.K.! Latest news is that the EU is looking at export restrictions on all vaccine manufacturers if there is a shortfall on EU supplies, not just Pfizer, so potentially many other… Read more »

David

The EU just don’t look like an ally

Tom

Its not an EU UK issue is it. Its supplier client. It serves no purpose for it descend into anything other than a contract dispute.
Provided the contracts don’t clash or overlap then the truth will out. Its an emotive subject and best off not been politicised.

James

Well those that did suck up to the EU should remember EU ex president Donald Tusk ” There is s special place in hell for brexiters ”
This vaccine row is a demonstration of this. Merkel : ” Britain will be seen as a competitor post brexit ” The EU is at a political and trade war with the UK which is crystal clear! Instigated by Germany and France . The Germany media being most hostile to the UK

Meirion X

We have certainly missed a bullet here!

Derek

So, the incompetent (unelected) ruling class of Europe, with the ingrained arrogance of those who feel they rule by right, not by consent, have decided that my life should be put at higher risk by removing my bought and paid for vaccine and it should be sent to Europe because they can’t organize a Bierfest in Bavaria. I consider that an act of war, personally.

I trust my dear friends in the remain camp will now see that we are well and truly shot of these illegitimate sons and daughters.

Derek

Still look on the bright side, if The EU does stand up it’s own Armed Forces under it’s own control. The war would be over before they got out of the committee stage.

Sjb1968

This comment lightened up my day

Derek

You’re welcome.

Mr Bell

True they would take 3 months to decide on a strategy. By which time we would have destroyed every airbase, radar site, bridge, military base in Europe.

dan

Please Britain don’t bow down to Merkel and her socialist elitist wankers!

Mr Bell

The UK secured its vaccine doses within a block contract structure months before the EU. The EU/ Astra contract only stipulates Astra will strive to do it’s best. The facts are that the Astra vaccine until today had not even been given its emergency licensing. Some 6-7 weeks after the UK and 4-5 weeks after the USA. Why? Because the EMA (European medicines agency) did not trust the companies manufacturing the vaccine and wanted to do their own peer reviews. The MHRA knew in June last year that once the UK left the EU that the EU EMA would not… Read more »

James

I’m better think twice?

No we thought first, Prost!!

If we had still been in the Eu we would be sat waiting for vaccines too.

Hope the SNP will manage to see reality for a change too.

Mr Bell

Just to add to the EUs woes. The MHRA has just licensed the Novomax vaccine which is 89% effective against severe CV19 disease.
Great news.
Especially as 60 million doses on order and its manufactured in the UK. Stockton on Tees.
Oh dear more trouble and pressure building up on the EU.
Wonder how they are going to say they are entitled to those vaccines too?

Herodotus

Well, that’s just about every post commented on, time for a tea-break eh ding-dong. By the way, who do you think is going to win the FA Cup this year?

Frank62

Covid’s first 19.

Mr Bell

Yep well. Someone has to highlight the truth.
FA cup. Dont care as I dont follow football. The game was ruined by big money and the premiere league years ago.
Why dont you go put your headphones back on and go back to wearing a blindfold because clearly the facts and truth are not allowed to enter your brain.
I will continue to post if I so choose because we live in a free and democratic country mate. Much to EUs annoyance.

Herodotus

I’m not surprised that you don’t follow football…where would you find the time. Too busy sending thinly disguised hate messages.
I am always amused by fanatics, of whatever persuasion, that insist that they know the facts and the truth. Try a basic course in philosophy….you will quickly discover that you know bugger all, and least of all the Truth (absolutely shimmering arrogance).

Mr Bell

I know a good deal more then you do on this issue. There is no hate coming from my side just yours. It is a common thread for the truelly arrogant such as yourself, to accuse others (anyone with a different opinion to themselves, because they have a philosophy qualification and must be right at all times) of hate and arrogance to hide your own ignorance on this issue. I’m hoping this website edits or bans your hate filled posts herodutus because they are uncalled for. I reiterate I am entitled in a democratic country to share facts and express… Read more »

Mike O

I would give the EU vaccinations from the UK allocation in the spirit of friendship. With the condition that the EU proves that it is not a protectionist block and cares about the international community. It could do this by proportionally matching the UK’s COVAX donation of over £500 million. The EU is about 10 times the size of the UK. An extra £5 billion should help the developing world’s vaccination problems.

Mike O

Well maybe not quite 10 times the size 😊 but the point still stands.

OldSchool

Over on the Guardian theyre strongly suggesting the EU will block Pfizer deliveries to UK. I suspect its inevitable. Personally if I’d like the UK to order more AZ doses in that case – with priority for UK citz’s of course and prior to any doses going to the EU. Since they don’t believe in first come first serve (LOL) this shouln’t trouble them……

James

Well exactly, they block our supplies from Pfizer we block Astra supplies from our side.

They really are starting to show how pathetic they are at negotiations, very glad the UK has stood up to them over the last couple of years.

Frank62

Me too, but on purely humanitarian grounds I would not want any hinderence in getting the vaccine to everyone who needs it, regardless of their government/trading bloc. Once we’ve got the most vulnerable covered(2 jabs, but sad for the 11% it’s not effective on!) lets help others as much as we can.

If others play silly whatsits, it doesn’t mean we have to sink to their purile level.

Mr Bell

Disagree Frank. We need to get the top 5 or 6 tiers vaccinated to reduce the burden of this horrific disease.
So 25-30 million doses administered before we can even consider any uk contracted vaccine being donated abroad.
If we are donating abroad the vaccines should go to Brazil, Mexico and India as they are the worst affected countries proportionately after the UK and USA. USA does not need our support at this time as they have Moderna jab in large scale production. If however we are requested then yes USA too before the EU.

John Walker

And then what do we do when the EU blocks the ingredients for the AZ vaccine? The AZ vaccine supply chains extend to EU. Just because the vaccine is manufactured in the UK doesn’t mean we are totally independent.

KPB

It’s one bloke, a no-mark on a health committee, whining via social media. It’s hardly an official announcement from the EU itself. That woman in charge may have said similar today, but in effect she’s telling AZ to choose which contract to breach.

No doubt our friends in Russia are doing their best to whip this up too.

Keep Calm and Carry On Jabbing.

The Artist Formerly Known As Los Pollos Chicken

I’ve put a freedom of request into the Gov for how many people have suffered adverse reactions from Pfizer and Astra Zeneca effort as in those who were unable to perform normal daily activities, unable to work, required care from doctor or health care professional after receiving it.

I look forward to the official stats although something tells me there is going to be a delay in me getting this info if indeed they ever give it out at all…🤔 hmmmmmmmmm

Ernest Harrison

The reason the EU are acting like Children in this vaccine war. Is Simple: “The EU have not realised yet, that the UK are no longer members of their union”